Celtics, Past and Present, React to Kobe Bryant’s Death

The death of Kobe Bryant has sent shockwaves through the NBA and its legion of fans. TMZ broke the news that the 41-year-old basketball legend was killed in a helicopter crash in California on Sunday.

Despite the decades-long rivalry between the Lakers and Celtics, many of Boston’s current and former players are big Kobe Bryant fans. They turned to social media Sunday to share their disbelief in the passing of the man they has so much admiration for.

Jayson Tatum is a well-known, longtime fan of Bryant. The legend was Tatum’s favorite player growing up.

"I'm sick to my stomach right now," tweeted Tatum.

"My hero. My idol. The reason I started to play this game,” Tatum posted on Instagram. “Growing up wanting to be just like you, to you becoming a mentor, beyond thankful for everything you've done for me.”

May Cs were in disbelief. Marcus Smart tweeted "Please God no."

"R.I.P. legend, prayers up," tweeted Enes Kanter.

Boston legends, such as Paul Pierce were also in disbelief. Pierce tweeted “this is not real right now.”

"I'm crushed ... (lost) for words. Can't believe this. Love you Kobe," Kevin Garnett posted on Instagram.

Former coach Doc Rivers simply wrote “complete sadness…”

"We all mourn the death of Kobe Bryant," tweeted former C’s guard Tony Allen. "My heart goes out to his family. May he rest in peace."

"Jeannine and I are absolutely shocked to hear about the loss of one of my favorite people and one of the best basketball minds in the history of the game," tweeted Hall of Famer Bill Russell. "Our hearts and prayers go out to Vanessa and his girls. Kobe, you were my biggest fan, but I was yours."

(PHOTO: Getty Images)

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